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HomeNewsHay River NewsNorth ill-prepared to cope with oil spills in Arctic ocean: WWF

North ill-prepared to cope with oil spills in Arctic ocean: WWF

The North is ill-prepared to cope with oil spills in the Arctic ocean, according to the Canadian wing of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF).

The WWF says that an arctic shipping oil spill would devastate the surrounding marine environment, including the destruction of habitat for polar bears, seals, walrus, sea birds, as well as beluga, narwhal and bowhead whales.

Overall, the reports say communities are not prepared to cope with a major spill from a commercial vessel and neither is the Canadian Coast Guard.

The Coast Guard’s have enough equipment to clean up only about one tonne of spilled oil, and it’s unlikely that any of its vessels could reach a spill fast enough to make much of a difference.

That’s because there are usually only three Coast Guard ships responsible for the entire Northwest Passage.

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